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2021-07-25- Birmingham (EGBB) - Agreements with Area Control


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Chad Byworth

Effective 25 July 2021

Following the release of the updated Birmingham vMATS Part 2 there has been a slight amendment to inbound release procedures (primarily via CHASE with the release point now specified at FL120 [previously FL100]) and new procedures have been introduced with AC West with regards to the Birmingham/Cotswold Flexible Use Airspace.

There have been no changes to outbound agreements with AC Daventry (via ADMEX/COWLY/CPT/DTY/UNGAP/WCO) or PC South East (via LUVUM).

This post documents these changes for AC controllers pending an update to the London vMATS Part 2.

 

Inbound Releases

Inbounds via CHASE

Inbounds via CHASE will be transferred from PC South East to Birmingham RAD by means of the following silent transfer agreement:

Via

Standing Agreement

Release Point

CHASE

Descending FL90

Passing FL120

Note 1: Traffic will be transferred level separated at CHASE with PC South East descending successive inbounds to FL90 when the prior inbound is observed to have vacated FL90. If this cannot be achieved, then PC South East is responsible for coordinating each inbound.

Note 2: Birmingham RAD shall suspend the silent release procedure when holding at CHASE.

Note 3: Restrictions for vectoring/descending inbounds via CHASE once passed FL120 are detailed below.

Inbounds via HON to GROVE

Inbounds via HON to GROVE will be transferred from AC Daventry to Birmingham RAD by means of the following silent transfer agreement:

Via

Standing Agreement

Release Point

HON

FL90 level HON

HON

Note 1: Traffic will be transferred 10 NM in trail or greater, constant or increasing. If this cannot be achieved, then AC Daventry is responsible for coordinating each inbound.

Note 2: Birmingham RAD shall suspend the silent release procedure when holding at GROVE at FL90 or above.

Inbounds via BIFIN to GROVE

Inbounds via BIFIN to GROVE will be transferred from AC West to Birmingham RAD by means of the following silent transfer agreement:

Via

Standing Agreement

Release Point

BIFIN

FL130 level BIFIN

GROVE

Note 1: Traffic will be transferred 10 NM in trail or greater, constant or increasing. If this cannot be achieved, then AC West is responsible for coordinating each inbound.

Note 2: Transfer of communication shall be after FIGZI but prior to BIFIN.

Note 3: Birmingham RAD shall suspend the silent release procedure when holding at GROVE.

Note 4: The silent transfer agreement is replaced with a reduced radar handover outside the hours of operations of Birmingham/Cotswold FUA – see below.

 

Vectoring and Descent before Release Point

Inbounds via CHASE

Birmingham RAD may vector for right turns only and descend inbounds after passing FL120 when they ensure separation from Birmingham/Coventry outbounds – this is achieved when:

  • There are no outbounds, or
  • When outbounds are retained by Birmingham RAD until transferred clean to PC South East, or
  • When outbounds under the control of PC South East are observed to climb above FL80 (PC South East is responsible for separation of all outbounds under its control cleared above FL80).

Inbounds via CHASE which are turned right will be considered fully released upon entering the Birmingham Area of Responsibility or upon passing abeam CHASE, whichever sooner.

Inbounds via BIFIN to GROVE

Traffic is released for descent to FL80 on contact (subject to the base of controlled airspace) and released for turns after BIFIN subject to outbounds – Birmingham RAD is responsible for providing separation against outbound traffic previously transferred to AC West.

Inbounds via HON to GROVE
Runway 33 Operations

Traffic is released for descent below FL90 and vectoring once west of the extended centreline. Additionally, when Birmingham RAD ensures 5 NM separation against all outbound Birmingham/Coventry traffic at or below FL90 then inbound traffic may be issued descent and turns up to 30° left of track upon entering Daventry CTA 9 (that section of the Daventry CTA north of DTY VOR).

Runway 15 Operations

Traffic is released for descent below FL90 and vectoring at HON.

Additionally, when Birmingham RAD implements a departure check and there are no conflicting outbounds then traffic may be issued descent/turns to position for a left-hand downwind upon entering the lateral confines of Birmingham delegated airspace prior to HON.

In the event there is conflicting traffic then Birmingham RAD must coordinate with AC Daventry.

 

Birmingham and Cotswold Flexible Use Airspace

Birmingham CTA 10 and Cotswold CTAs 15-18 are designated Flexible Use Airspace (FUA). These portions of airspace are established between 1700-0900 local Monday-Thursday and 1700 local Friday-0900 local Monday (extended to include public holidays). Outside of these hours the airspace reverts to Class G.

Controllers should note that Delegated Area C includes Birmingham CTA 10, when established it exists FL65-FL105, outside the hours of operations the overlying Daventry CTA remains active with a base of FL105.

 

Procedures outside FUA Hours of Operations

Inbounds via BIFIN

Outside the hours of operation of Birmingham/Cotswold Flexible Use Airspace inbounds via BIFIN will leave controlled airspace at FIGZI. AC West will continue to route inbounds via the FIGZI 1B STAR and will transfer inbounds descending to FL130 level BIFIN (to maintain consistency with the silent transfer agreement) but transferred by means of a reduced radar handover. AC West shall verbally coordinate the reduced radar handover with Birmingham RAD in the format:

“BIFIN radar handover, [Callsign], [UK FIS type].”

Note: If AC West initiates a transfer without conducting the verbal reduced radar handover then Birmingham RAD may assume the traffic is under a Deconfliction Service.

Unless specified in the reduced radar handover, traffic is fully released on contact subject to outbounds routing to MOSUN  – Birmingham RAD is responsible for providing separation against outbound traffic previously transferred to AC West.

It is the responsibility of AC West to initiate coordination with Birmingham RAD when unknown traffic in Class G airspace prevents AC West from achieving the standing agreement.

Birmingham RAD will provide clearance to enter the Birmingham CTR/CTA and integrate the inbound into arrival stream/instruct the inbound to hold at GROVE as required.

Outbounds to MOSUN

Outside the hours of operation of Birmingham/Cotswold Flexible Use Airspace the N92 ATS route (LUXTO – OKTAD) is disestablished. Outbounds from Runway 33 will route via the UMLUX 1M SID then route direct MOSUN, outbounds from Runway 15 will fly the MOSUN 15 procedure. These outbounds will leave controlled airspace at the Birmingham CTA boundary and shall be provided a Deconfliction Service (reduced to a Traffic Service if workload or other factors prevent Birmingham RAD from applying a Deconfliction Service).

Birmingham RAD shall transfer outbounds to AC West, either on own navigation MOSUN or a radar heading, climbing to FL120, by means of a reduced radar handover. RAD shall verbally coordinate the reduced radar handover with AC West in the format:

“MOSUN radar handover, [Callsign], [UK FIS type].”

Traffic is to be transferred once it is outside of controlled airspace and, unless specified by Birmingham RAD during the handover, outbounds are released for climb on contact (subject to AC Daventry controlled airspace). Birmingham RAD is responsible for providing separation against inbound traffic routing via BIFIN.

Birmingham RAD is responsible for coordinating with AC West when unknown traffic in Class G airspace prevents RAD from achieving the standing agreement.

Note: In the absence of AC West, RAD may provide a Deconfliction Service to 40 NM (ie. to MOSUN) from Birmingham (subject to workload).

 

Documentation Status

The updated Birmingham vMATS Part 2 incorporates these procedures.

The London vMATS Part 2 will be amended at its next revision.

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